Carpio: Duterte can delegate certain powers to VP Leni

Mike Navallo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 30 2019 01:05 PM

TAGUIG – Recently-retired Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio on Tuesday said President Rodrigo Duterte could delegate certain powers to Vice President Leni Robredo, following Duterte’s statement he would make Robredo the drug czar for 6 months.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a thanksgiving dinner in honor of his retirement, Carpio said it is within the prerogative of the President to delegate powers.

"The President can of course delegate certain powers. But I don't know how that will be taken by the Vice President but it’s a principle in law that the President can delegate his powers because he cannot do all," he said.

"Under this system of government, executive power is vested in one person – the President. But of course he cannot have all the time to exercise all those powers, do all of those jobs so he has the power to delegate that to certain people," he explained.

These powers, he said, include making arrests and conducting surveillance, which, while lodged with the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation, can be placed under an agency headed by a civilian such as the Department of the Interior and Local Government for the PNP. The NBI is under the Department of Justice.

Carpio said this can be done by a special delegation which should be in writing.

"It can be a special delegation because the President has many ways of delegating his powers," he said.

But he warns all this talk about appointing Robredo as drug czar are speculative until Robredo accepts Duterte’s challenge and more details are threshed out.

"It’s all speculation because the Vice President, we don't know whether she will accept or not and we don't know the extent of the delegation of authority, who will be the people under the Vice {resident, what agencies will be under her so it’s a very broad proposal and it’s very difficult to define what kind of work the person to whom it is delegated will do," he explained.

President Duterte first raised the idea of appointing Robredo as the drug czar at a speech on Monday, after Robredo criticized the President’s war on drugs.

"I will surrender my powers to enforce the law to the vice president. Ibigay ko sa kanya mga (I’ll give it to her for around) 6 months," he said.

“Siya ang magdala. Tingnan natin kung anong mangyari. Mas bright ka? Ikaw subukan mo,” he added.

(Let's see if she can do it. She thinks she's brighter? She should try it.)

Robredo had been quoted in a Reuters report as saying she thinks Duterte should stop the “failed drug war.”
She later clarified she only said it is time to re-assess the anti-drug campaign.

Reacting to the President’s offer, Robredo said Tuesday, Duterte’s remarks is further proof the drug war has failed.

"Kung walang failure, bakit ipapasa sa akin? ‘Di ba? Kasi ipapasa mo lang ang isang bagay kapag hindi mo na kayang gawin. Kung hindi— Kung successful kasi siya, hindi kailangang ipasa, kasi wala nang ipapasa, eh. Kasi nagawa mo na. Pero kung ipapasa mo sa iba, hindi ba admission iyon na ang dami pang kailangan gawin?" she told reporters in Iloilo City. 

(But if it was not a failure, why are they passing it on to me? Because you pass on things if you can't do them. If they were successful, they don't need to pass it on, because there will be nothing to pass on, because you've already done it. But if you're passing it on to others, doesn't it mean that there is still a lot to be done?)